June 16, 2003

I've gotten National Geographic for

I've gotten National Geographic for years, since I was in elementary school, I think (as a gift). I used to read about random tribes in Africa or whatever, and would finish the issue thinking I'd learned stuff. I knew the people who wrote it were probably leftist weirdos, but I assumed it was mostly accurate. In recent years I've been too busy with school and stuff to really sit down and read it - I have a map collection, and I found myself just shaking out the magazine to get the map. Eventually, I told the person who's been giving me the subscription all these years "thanks, but I'm not interested anymore."

Looking back, I'm glad I did. The article I'm going to be writing about / fisking is entitled "The Great Lakes: Are They Shrinking" and is found in the Sept. 2002 issue. An excerpt can be found here at the National Geographic website.

First off, there are plenty of statistics that don't prove the author's point. "Ontario's snowpack near Lake Superior has declined in depth and density, with snowmelt running below average in three of the past five years." Three out of five. And we can assume that the sixth year previous saw above-average snowmelt, since he would have included it in the statistic if it had been below. That gives us, hmm, 3/6. Uh-oh, half the winters in our sample are above the average.

The author also spends a page or so whining about ships that scrape bottom. First off, there's always going to be shallow water. There are always going to be stupid boaters. Secondly, he still hasn't proved that the low water isn't a cyclical thing, but is due to global warming.

There are a lot of just completely random facts in here, too. I don't know if the author had a word requirement he was trying to get to, or what. Here's one: "If only the Earth were flat and the lakes adaptable as buckets, there'd be enough H2O here to flood all the land of the Western Hemisphere under 2 feet of water." Um, OK. It seems that if the earth were flat, the frickin' OCEANS would cover the land. But whatever, keep your precious little factoid. It's all yours, dude.

He also describes the water cycle as a "complex hydrologic cycle". Yeah, that's why we learned about it in third grade. Evaporation -> Clouds -> Precipitation -> Runoff -> Lake -> Evaporation again. Real complex; why are you writing for National Geographic again?

The best (saddest?) parts, however, are the pathetic attempts to translate the locals' words into paranoid envirospeak. "'Oh, the lake will come up someday,' Cline said. A retired surgeon and Wolrd War II leatherneck dive-bomber pilot, he has seen much of the upper Great Lakes from the cockpit of his private plane... now, at the top of the steps above his dehydrated beach, I could only say to Cline, "I hope you're right."

The money quote? (emphasis mine): "Although there is still some uncertainty about the effects of global warming, current studies suggest that under some scenarios the water level of the Great Lakes could be further lowered by three feet or more by the middle of the 21st century." Oh boy.

If you can find the issue, read the article. It's great.

Posted by Tim at June 16, 2003 04:48 PM

Online Forex Trading

http://online-forex-trading.org Online Forex Trading

Posted by: Online Forex Trading at June 14, 2005 04:37 PM

currency exchange

http://currency-exchange-online.net currency exchange

Posted by: currency exchange at June 30, 2005 08:26 AM

pharmacy affiliate program pharmacy affiliate program

Posted by: pharmacy affiliate program at August 18, 2005 01:47 AM

backgammon gambling

http://www.best-backgammon-gambling.com backgammon gambling

Posted by: backgammon gambling at September 4, 2005 02:29 PM

backgammon real money

http://www.backgammon-real-money.com backgammon real money

Posted by: backgammon real money at September 6, 2005 06:29 AM

back gammon

http://www.back-gammon.org Back Gammon

Posted by: Back Gammon at September 7, 2005 07:08 AM

Software Downloads

http://oem-downloads.com Software Downloads

Posted by: Software Downloads at September 8, 2005 07:39 PM

best watches
http://best-watches.biz best watches

Posted by: best watches at September 13, 2005 03:13 PM

casino on the net

http://www.casino-on-the-net.net casino on the net

Posted by: casino on the net at September 15, 2005 07:59 PM

patek philippe
http://patek-philippe.name patek philippe

Posted by: patek philippe at September 22, 2005 08:51 PM

swiss rolex replica
http://swiss-rolex-replica.net swiss rolex replica

Posted by: swiss rolex replica at September 28, 2005 03:38 PM

tag heuer watches
http://tag-heuer-watches.com tag heuer watches

Posted by: tag heuer watches at October 1, 2005 04:26 AM

rolex daytona

https://rolex-daytona.org rolex daytona

Posted by: rolex daytona at October 4, 2005 12:26 PM

chrono swiss

http://chronoswiss.us chrono swiss

Posted by: chrono swiss at October 8, 2005 04:30 PM

Rolex Replica

http://rolex-replica.name Rolex Replica

Posted by: Rolex Replica at October 10, 2005 02:32 PM

rolex dealer

http://rolex-dealer.net rolex dealer

Posted by: rolex dealer at October 11, 2005 09:46 AM

omega watch
http://omega-watch.net omega watch

Posted by: omega watch at October 14, 2005 04:45 AM

hoodia cactus diet
hoodia cactus diet

Posted by: hoodia cactus diet at October 14, 2005 08:24 PM

replica watches

http://replica-watches.name replica watches

Posted by: replica watches at October 16, 2005 10:00 AM

hoodia cactus
hoodia cactus

Posted by: hoodia cactus at October 24, 2005 11:43 AM

וילה בטוסקנה

http://www.pianelli-tuscany.com/israel.htm וילה בטוסקנה

Posted by: וילה בטוסקנה at October 25, 2005 08:00 PM
Post a comment

Remember personal info?